News Release

Hundred Year Old Promise Assists Malaysian Families

Family Home Evening has been practiced since 1915 when then President Joseph F Smith said, "we advise and urge the inauguration of a 'home evening' throughout the Church, at which time fathers and mothers may gather their boys and girls about them in the home and teach them the word of the Lord.". For one hundred years members of the Mormon church have been encouraged to set aside one night a week to be with their families and develop a deeper bond with one another.

Leaders of the Ipoh, Malaysia congregation of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are teaching new members and church friends how to successfully build family ties. Each Tuesday the church is opened for people to learn how to have a Family Home Evening. Local members of the church, as well as volunteers from around the world, take turns teaching and conducting a typical home evening experience. On a recent Tuesday evening, twenty eight people of all ages and cultures shared the evening. People from Malaysia, China, India, and Korea, came together to learn from one another.

Ernest Tan, a local church leader said  "Family home evening is a great weekly tradition that can bring your family closer together as you share spiritual feelings and have fun together. We invite all our members and friends to join in learning how to accomplish this task."  At 8:00 the evening started with participants sharing song and a prayer. A object lesson illustrated using the Light of Christ for direction in one's life. That was followed with a group discussion of how to share your light with those in need. A rousing game of "Upset The Fruit Basket" was played with friends aged 5 to 65 and a good laugh was shared by all.

After a closing prayer, food and treats were shared, including a crock of freshly churned homemade ice cream. Nineteen year old Sandra Khoo said "I like the messages that are shared and of course the food is good. Yet the best part is when we share activities together, it feels like a family, and that feels good."

President Tan shared the following about the home evening program. Late in 2014, Zhao Li Juan moved to Ipoh from mainland China so her daughter, Anna could attend school. When inquiring where she might find a family oriented church, a Non-Mormon neighbor pointed out a nearby building and told her "I know that Church believes in families because I see many mothers, fathers and children attending".  After reading a bulletin board notice, Zhao Li attended her first weekly home evening in September of 2014. She has been a regular attendee ever since and was baptized in April, 2015.  Zhao Li told us "I feel so happy when we are here. We are learning and growing as a family. Weekly Family Home Evening has made us stronger. My husband in China can feel the difference and can see what we learn is good."

Zhao Li has seen the 100 year old promise come true when Joseph F. Smith said ..."If the people obey this counsel, we promise that great blessings will result. Love at home and obedience to parents will increase. Faith will be developed in the hearts of the youth of Israel, and they will gain power to combat the evil influences and temptations which beset them".

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